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New parole policy requires faster response

5:41 PM, Apr 9, 2013   |    comments
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COLORADO SPRINGS -- The Department of Corrections has changed its policy to require that parole officers respond within two hours after receiving an alert that could indicate a parolee has removed an ankle monitor.

The policy comes after 9Wants to Know reported suspected murderer Evan Ebel took off his ankle monitor days before police say he killed two people.

A parole officer did not go to his house for five days to check on him. He was not at the house.

An arrest warrant was issued the day after police say Ebel killed Tom Clements. Ebel's ankle monitor was taken off three days before police say he killed a father of three, Nate Leon.

The Department of Corrections made the policy announcement Tuesday but said the new policy had been in effect since Sunday.

The Department of Corrections previously had no policy that required parolee officers to respond within a certain time frame.

Ankle monitor alerts are common. More than 100 are received most months, according to data from the Department of Corrections.

No additional staff will be added, but parole staff will be compensated for the additional time outside of work hours that they spend responding to alerts, Parole Director Tim Hand said.

The Department of Corrections is doing a review of the department's parole operations and is bringing in an outside group to do a comprehensive review of parole operations.

"DOC is conducting the review to ensure its policies and operations maximize public safety," a Department of Corrections statement said.

The Colorado Court Administrator is also conducting a review of inmate sentences statewide. This review will look at crimes that require an inmate to be sentenced consecutively to any other sentences the inmate may be serving.

Ebel was released because the sentence he received for assaulting a corrections officer did not specify concurrent or consecutive. The Department of Corrections says it followed state case law which instructs it to interpret such a sentence as concurrent.

Have a comment or tip for investigative reporter Jace Larson? Call him at 303-871-1432 or e-mail him
jace.larson@9news.com

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